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Babylon Mystery Orchestra

Poinum Cherem

Review by Gary Hill

I really like everything from Bablyon Mystery Orchestra. Surely some will complain about its inclusion in the progressive rock section, and some of the tracks are arguably less prog than others, I think the combination of sounds earns it the title “prog rock.” The vocals will be a bone of contention with some people and as unorthodox as they are, I always like them. All in all, this is another fine release from Babylon Mystery Orchestra.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2012  Volume 5 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Chorale What Should Not Be

This comes in heavy and slow. The vocals have a great anthemic operatic feeling to them. This short piece runs less than a minute.

Destroyer
Fast paced and heavy, this is still not metal. It’s got more to it than that. There is a meaty guitar solo.
The Affliction

Symphonic elements are heard on this stomper. It’s certainly more progressive rock than it is heavy metal, but both sounds are present here.

Apollyon

I love the riff that drives this thing. It’s sort of Led Zeppelin-like. The melodic guitar solo on this is awesome. There’s also a later guitar solo.

I Am an Artist

 A cool fast paced bass line opens this and the song builds out from there. Early on we get alternating bursts of powered up guitar driven sound and keyboard dominated music. This is more purely progressive rock oriented than a lot of the other music here, but it still gets heavy. That bass line really stands out.

Devilution

Here we get another heavy rocking tune. It’s not a huge change, but it’s also very tasty. The guitar solo section is quite noteworthy, but so is the percussion on a lot of the track.

Another Path

While this pounds in heavy, there are acoustic elements early on, alternating with bursts of pounding rock. It shifts towards a melodic, acoustic based rock motif for the first verse. Even when it powers out from there, the acoustic guitar is still prevalent. This is more proggy and one of the more intriguing pieces on show.

Seething

This one certainly fits into progressive rock, although it’s still heavy and crunchy. It’s a killer tune with a lot of intriguing elements at play.

A Prophet's Song

A mellow, proggy ballad-like sound starts this off. The first vocals come in over that motif. That concept takes it almost to the two minute mark. Then it powers out into more crunchy sounds. There is a change later but it still remains crunchy. Further down the musical road, though, it drops back to mellower, more proggy sounds to continue. That musical concept eventually takes this out.

We Write the Words

While this pounds in heavy and metallic, keyboards bring some more proggy elements. The instrumental segments later in the track really reinforce that combination of sounds.

Poinium Cherem

At almost nine and a half minutes, this is a real epic. It gets a spoken introduction then pounds out into one of the cooler arrangements of the whole set. After the instrumental portion of the intro, it drops to a bass driven segment like Black Sabbath’s “Heaven and Hell.” The vocals come over the top of that. It powers out beyond that section. Then around the three minute mark it drops to atmospheric space. Spoken vocals are heard over that backdrop after a time. It plods out with heaviness after a time, but then floats out into more space. When it rises back up into rock territory it’s for a great melodic guitar solo, then we’re dropped back into that “Heaven and Hell” styled section. The harder rocking sounds eventually take the track to its finish.

Finale...what Could Not Be
Keyboard sounds serve as the backdrop for backwards tracked vocals that end the disc.
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